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Updated: Monday, 20 Aug 2012, 10:30 PM CDT
Published : Monday, 20 Aug 2012, 3:05 PM CDT
MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) - Summer break is over and that means the City of Mobile's daytime curfew is back in effect.
Anyone under the age of 17 has to be off the streets between 9 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. on public school days.
The curfew began January 1, 2012 and ran until May when school ended.
During the first five months the daytime curfew was in effect, police said they questioned more than 136 juveniles who weren’t in school during the designated times.
Now with school back in full swing, Cpl. Chris Levy said police will be enforcing the curfew again.
“I think it pin points something that needs to be addressed and, hopefully, we can do that. If the kids are in school, they're not breaking in your house,” Levy said. “We know the times when kids are in school are when they are less likely to commit a crime or be a victim.”
“If a police officer sees a child that's not in school and he is of school age, he can do something about it. He has the right to by law,” said a Mobile parent Tom Ball.
He thinks the curfew helps keep kids and parents in line.
“At the school hours, kids need to be at school or home if they are sick. They don't need to be out running the street,” said Ball.
“In the past, we never really had the tools to enforce anything. We could just ask what they were doing and that’s about it. But now, we actually have some action,” Levy said.
Officers have discretion in enforcing the curfew. Teens that are compliant will just be given a verbal warning or have their parents called. Teens that persist on staying out, risk a $100 fine, which will go up to $500 and possible jail time for repeat offenses.
Parent Corey Fortner said it lets adolescents know, “there is an extra measure out there to keep them from skipping school and getting in trouble. School is where they need to be.”
There is also a night time curfew where juveniles must be off the streets by 11 p.m. on weeknights and midnight on weekends.
In the downtown Mobile entertainment district, the curfew begins at 10 p.m.
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